[28 November/Otago Daily Times]

Imports far outweighed exports for October, taking the annual trade deficit to $5.8 billion, its largest deficit since October 2007. With exports dipping 6.4% month on month and the cost of imports increasing as a result of a then low New Zealand dollar and increased imported fuel costs. Statistics New Zealand international statistics manager Tehseen Islam said on an annual basis, imports from China were now twice the value they were in the October 2008 year, while exports during the decade had more than quadrupled. Exports to China were up by $242 million to $1.2 billion when compared with October last year, he said. Over the same decade, annual goods exports to China increased $11.2 billion to reach $13.5 billion for the year ended October. Milk powder, butter and cheese led this rise up $3.7 billion, with milk powder alone up $2.1 billion, while logs, wood, and wood articles were up $2.6 billion and meat and edible offal was up $1.8 billion, these being key contributors to the exports rise.